Pollution Bill on the Governor's Desk

Thursday, August 05, 2004
As previously reported, as a result of the May 2003 oil spill in Buzzards Bay in the U.S. (an oil barge grounding spilled 55,000 gallons of fuel oil, polluting 93 miles of the Massachusetts coastline), the Massachusetts legislators have introduced new legislation, which was adopted last week by both the State House of Representatives and the State Senate.

The bill was now been submitted to the Massachusetts Governor for final signature. The Governor Mitt Romney has a deadline by end of this week to sign or to veto the bill.

This proposed unilateral state legislation is of importance to our members since some of its provisions will directly affect their trade to Massachusetts ports. We will provide a more detailed analysis of the bill but the following is a summary of the main provisions affecting tank vessels carrying not only oil but any other hazardous materials:

1. Financial assurance - a minimum of $1 million to be provided by one party or jointly by the ship owner, charterer, cargo owner, etc. Discounts/reductions may be granted to ships and tanker operators according to the ship's size, design (i.e. double hull), safety records of the ship and of the owner, etc.

2. Liability/charges - persons guilty of a negligent discharge should be penalised with a fine of no more than $25,000 per day of violation.

3. Inspections - inspectors of the Massachusetts Department of Environment are entitled to inspect vessels in case of an accidental/operational discharge.

4. VTS - a VTS service is to be established in the Buzzards Bay area by 1 January 2006 - if not by that date, then as soon as possible thereafter. The VTS shall be advisory by nature and the bill takes care of limiting any liability in case of a mistake by the VTS service provider.

5. Fees for VTS - Massachusetts may establish a fee to fund the VTS System.

6. Drug and Alcohol policy - vessels have to have onboard kits for testing crews for drug and alcohol consumption.

7. Creation of a State Oil Spill Prevention and Response Fund - financing from various sources (governmental and private). The cargo receiver is one nominated private party. The Fund should be up to $10 million.

(Source: Intertanko)


Legal

Securing the Scorpene: DCNS to Move Court

The French shipbuilder DCNS plans to seek an injunction to prevent further publication of information contained in 22,400 secret documents about stealth submarines built for India,

SOS from Hanjin Shipping

The creditors' extended help is crucial for survival of Hanjin Shipping Co as its negotiations with owners of chartered ships over a cut in leasing rates and to

Hapag-Lloyd Shareholders Okays Merger with UASC

Hamburg-based ocean carrier Hapag-Lloyd said its shareholders approved all items on the agenda at Annual General Meeting, mainly the  share capital increase needed

Education/Training

SUNY Maritime Among 'Best Bang for the Buck' Colleges

SUNY Maritime College has been named one of the best colleges for its price by Washington Monthly.   SUNY Maritime placed in the top 30 schools in the Northeast.

Coast Guard Foundation Awarded 128 Scholarships

The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the education and welfare of all Coast Guard members and their families, announced today that

Danish Maritime Authority Supports Maritime Cultural Days

The Danish Maritime Authority's buoy tender ’POUL LØWENØRN’ will be alongside in Korsør in connection with the Maritime Cultural Days. The vessel will be open to visitors throughout Saturday,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Offshore Oil Pipelines Port Authority Ship Repair Ship Simulators
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 6.2723 sec (0 req/sec)